What is the OzBargain Definitive Car Wash Guide?

Just got a new car and I am hoping to take care of it through regular washing with quality products, but I also don't want to break the bank.

This is the list of things I am looking to get so far:

  • Pressure washer
  • Foam cannon
  • Microfibre wash pad
  • Microfibre drying towel
  • Car wash shampoo
  • Foam pre-wash
  • Buckets and grit guard
  • Some kind of finishing product?

So what would be the best bang for buck 'OzBargain' products in regards to the above list?


  • +3

    $7 auto wash at the local 7-11 every few months

  • +2

    There's plenty of videos on Youtube and plenty of opinions on what the correct process is.
    (Hint: Everyone thinks that the way they do it is the "correct" way lol).

    There's also a tonne of products out there too, with each claiming to be the best.

    There's one undeniable fact though - the less scrubbing there is, the less swirl marks/scratches there will be. I always try and use the pressure washer as much as I can rather than scrubbing (don't do it on flaky paint though!).

  • +5

    Step 1: Wife reminds me cars needs to be washed for 6 to 12 months
    Step 2: Wash cars under duress
    Step 3: Avoid washing cars for another 6 to 12 months

  • +1

    Go to a car wash
    Claim as work expense

  • +2

    I leave mine out in the rain. Does a good job except for the bottom of the doors.

    • Just roll the car to get under there

  • +3

    Vacuum inside once a month. Wash the car before selling it. Works out really cheap

  • +8

    I’m a big fan of Bowden’s Own’s products. Quality has been great across the three cars I use the products on - their chemicals and their wash tools also. Being an Australian family company, with products developed and made in Australia also means you can feel warm and fuzzy about doing your bit for the local economy.

    SuperCheap and Repco regularly have 30% off sales for their products, so don’t ever pay full retail. Set-up an alert on OZB and buy what you need when it’s on sale.

    • +1 for Bowdens esp the Nanolicious

      I recommend NV snow wash for the snow foam

      Also look into a coating such as the turtle wax hybrid solutions range to protect the finish

    • I've been considering the Bowden's products too, which ones do you think are the 'must-have'?

      • +1

        Bowden's Own The Big Green Sucker - this will make drying your car a breeze

        • Yes looking to get this next time it goes on sale. Do you think a blower is necessary or will the green sucker do the job?

          • +2

            @catboy123: blower is not needed if you use BGS.

          • +2

            @catboy123: A blower is definitely a 'nice to have' but somewhat of a luxury. And the BGS is awesome - especially when paired with Boss Gloss as a drying aid.

            Having said that, I have the Bigboi Buddi Jnr, that I bought and use for my engine bay details. Makes for a nice finish, as it blows warm, filtered air, and only 139 bucks at Repco:

  • +4

    Self serve car wash…
    $1 for high pressure rinse
    $1 for foaming brush
    $1 for high pressure rinse off
    Chammy dry
    Vacuum at home with cordless vacuum

    • Replace the foaming brush with prewash soak unless really necessary

  • Step 1: wait till it rains
    Step 2 : move car outside

  • +1

    I pay $39 a month for unlimited washes. Use it a couple of times as week as I have a black car, under $5 a wash 👍

  • I usually go to a hand wash and get standard wash and vacuum. Bring it home then apply polish usually Autoglym Super Resin Polish. If it needs it I will clay bar first after the hand car wash. Sometimes I go over the top of the Autoglym with a Carnuba wax or Autoglym Extra Gloss protection.

    I have a new car and have used the Jay Leno's Radiant and so far am quite happy. Washed the car in a touch-less wash first then went over it with the quick detailer once home. I don't like to wash heaps of suds down the street drains hence I don't wash at home. I do not have a lawn or a driveway really.

  • +1

    1 bucket with detergent
    1 bucket of plain water for rinsing dirty cleaning mitt.
    Microfibre/wool cleaning mitt.
    Microfibre/cotton cloth or chamois for drying (usually skip this step)

  • New car. Dealer usually does car clean, applies wax before delivering which lasts for couple of months. Just do hand wash with car wash fluid (Armor All from kmart), vacuum, Glass cleaner, soft brush for tyre cleaner. Dry with microfibre/ chamois. I would avoid pressure washer unless car went offroad. That's it.

  • I have been doing touchless washes for more than a year to keep it reasonably not dirty. Nothing can beat a hand wash so I just did a hand wash with 2 buckets method a couple weeks ago.

    I used 2x Repco Bucket & Dirt Guard (one for clean soapy water & one for dirty rinsing water).

    I will do more touchless wash for maintenance and will do another hand wash when it becomes unbearable to the eyes lol.

  • Groupon car washes

  • I have tried both rinseless (past) and 2 bucket/foam cannon (present).

    I personally think 2 bucket is a lot of hassle and more effort. I find myself putting it off so have dirtier cars more of the time.

    Rinseless is much more convenient. I strongly recommend Optimum No Rinse. Will be ordering myself a batch soon and ditching the 2 buckets.

    This stuff https://youtu.be/U4Ed64hRF1k

  • Once a year - Spray with CT18 (from an ozb deal of course) then leave out in the rain.

    Once a mth - Vacuum inside, check tyre pressures